Morning exercise is a common problem: should you have a pre-workout meal?
If you're not a breakfast person and prefer to exercise on an empty stomach, then perhaps you can just drink some water, skip the meal, and start warming up right away.
But if you break down on an empty stomach in the middle of a workout, it's probably best to recharge your batteries before hitting the gym – and Los Angeles-based star coach Ash Scarrott, owner of Body by Ash and ambassador for The After Bar, has the ideal breakfast for you.
Don't worry, it won't bother you. We're not talking about apple wood bacon and eggs here (though that sounds pretty darn good). What we love about Scarrott's meal is that it's simple and strong, lean and mean.
Oats, fruits, protein, caffeine, creatine. Completed. Go exercise!
Ash Scarrott's favorite pre-workout breakfast
In the hour before your workout, here's your meal:
- ¾ cup of oatmeal
- 1 banana
- 1 cup of berries
- 1 scoop of whey protein isolate
- 1 or 2 shots of espresso
- 5 grams of creatine monohydrate
The best pre-workout foods for a great workout
Scarrott breaks down his perfect pre-workout meal piece by piece:
oats – "Oatmeal is a great, slower digesting carbohydrate that will help you stay full and charged to tackle any workout and help build lean muscles."
banana – "This is a slightly faster digestible carbohydrate to give a quick dose of energy to support your intense exercise routine."
Berry – “Berries are the perfect superfood for your pre-workout breakfast. They benefit the body in a number of ways, including helping to reduce inflammation and giving your body a few extra carbohydrates to keep your workout energized. "
Whey Protein Isolate (WPI.)) – “Whey Isolate is a quickly digestible source of protein that will keep you from feeling sluggish and bloated during your training session. I prefer whey protein powder over whole food sources of pre-workout protein because it doesn't make me feel heavy. During training, I want to feel light and be able to train with high intensity. If you are dairy sensitive and want to go with a plant-based protein powder, that's perfectly fine. Just make sure that you are consuming around 25 to 30 grams of protein. ”
espresso – “A shot or two of espresso gives me the energy and mental focus I need to train hard during my morning workouts. I use coffee over other pre-workout supplements because it gives me the energy I need without all of the extra things I don't think are necessary. "
Creatine monohydrate – “I take creatine for breakfast every morning. It helps with muscle regeneration and in building lean muscles, which is a must have for anyone who trains seriously. Creatine is the best scientifically proven supplement that actually works. Stop thinking about it. Use it."
Time-saving tips: Prepare the oatmeal the night before
Are you afraid that you won't have enough time in the morning to prepare your food? Then use overnight oats instead of hot porridge – and also throw in protein powder and fruit.
The night before your morning workout, mix a scoop of whey protein with about 250 grams of unsweetened almond milk in a shaker cup. Place the dry oatmeal in a Tupperware bowl, add the whey and milk mixture and stir.
Leave the bowl (with lid) in the refrigerator overnight and in the morning the oats will be soft. Cover the overnight whey oats with fruits before eating. You can even mix your creatine in if you want.
Simple alternative: a protein bar
Maybe you don't want to mess with oatmeal and fresh fruit in the morning and want something even more practical, like a protein bar. problem. Don't skip espresso and creatine, Scarrott says, switch to The After Bar for the whole foods.
The After Bar is getting you fruit and protein (albeit plant-based, not whey), plus the added benefits of CBD and a host of other micronutrients and antioxidants.
Pre-workout caffeine fix
Don't have an espresso machine at home? A cup of drip coffee is enough. "But skip the milk and sweeteners and opt for black coffee to avoid empty calories," says Scarrott.
Or maybe there's a Starbucks on the way to the gym with fast drive-through service. Just a thought.